[Guide] Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Update for HTC Sensation XL

HTC Sensation XL

The Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich update is finally rolling out for the HTC Sensation XL in Europe, bringing the “first ever 4.7-inch screen HTC device” up to the latest iteration of Android. Yes, it’s not Sense 4.0 but only Sense 3.6 as is the case for all pre-2012 HTC phones, but that’s a disappointment that probably doesn’t hurt much at this point. Other Android 4.0 features are included of course, such as better performance, enhanced data usage monitoring, an improved notification bar, and more.

The update has been made available for manual flashing by the ever helpful guys at the XDA community, and we’ve got a full guide that you can use to flash the update on your device, in case you don’t wish to wait for the update to hit your device over the air.

NOTE: The guide below is specially for those that have a custom recovery installed on their Sensation XL, as OTA updates do not work over custom recoveries. The process includes flashing back to a stock recovery, so read the whole procedure carefully.

Let’s take a look at how the Sensation XL can be updated to Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.


This guide is compatible only and only with the HTC Sensation XL. It’s not compatible with any other device and may render an incompatible device unusable. Check your device model in Settings » About phone.


The methods and procedures discussed here are considered risky and you should not attempt anything if you don’t know exactly what you are doing. If any damage occurs to your device, we won’t be held liable.

How to Update HTC Sensation XL to Android 4.0

PART I: Downloads and Necessary Preparations

  1. Make sure you have S-Off on your HTC Sensation XL, without which this process won’t work.
  2. Download and install the following on your computer:
    1. HTC Drivers  |  These are the drivers for the phone required for the procedure.
    2. .NET Framework 3.5  |  This is necessary to be able to flash stock recovery.
  3. Download Android Recovery Manager from → here. Download the EXE version.
  4. Extract the downloaded .rar file in step 3 to a convenient location on the computer (use software like WinRAR or 7-zip to extract) to obtain a file named RecoveryManager.exe.
  5. Download the Android 4.0 update file from → here.
    Filename: OTA_RUNNYMEDE_ICS_35_S_HTC_Europe_2.31.401.2-1.05.401.4_R2_release_258338d2wzjl71eps0s2e6.zip
  6. Rename the file downloaded in step 4 to update.zip and copy it to the SD card. Copy it directly to the SD card, don’t put it inside any folder inside the SD card.

PART II: Flashing Stock Recovery

  1. Enable USB Debugging on the phone from Settings » Applications » Development options, then connect the phone to the computer.
  2. Check the Software Number of your phone, by going into Settings » About » Software Information. Note down the number under Software Number.
  3. Now, double-click on the RecoveryManager.exe obtained in step 4 to start the Android Recovery Manager required to flash stock recovery.
  4. Then, follow these steps in Android Recovery Manager to install stock recovery on your phone:
    1. Click on Start.
    2. Click on the Download Recovery option.
    3. Now, select the option in the right side box of the Android Recovery Manager window that matches the software version on your phone (noted in step 2). For example, if your phone’s software number is, select the Vodafone FR option. Or if it’s 1.24.401.1, select the Europe 1.24.401.1 option.
    4. After selecting the necessary option, tick the I agree… box below, then click on the Download selected Recovery and Flash It option to start downloading the recovery.
    5. After the recovery is downloaded, click on Yes to start flashing the recovery. After the recovery flashing is finishes, select No to reboot into recovery.
  5. After the phone reboots, you will see an “!” icon on the screen. Here, hold the power button and press Volume Up (if that doesn’t work, press Volume Up button then press the power button). This will make the phone boot into recovery.

PART III: Flashing the Android 4.0 Update

  1. Using the volume keys to navigate up and down, highlight the Apply update from SD card option and select it using the power button.
  2. Then, scroll to the update.zip file, then select it using the power button to start installing the Android 4.0 update.
  3. After the update finishes installing, the phone should automatically reboot. If it doesn’t, go back to the main recovery menu and select reboot system now to reboot the phone.

Your HTC Sensation XL has now been successfully updated to the official Ice Cream Sandwich Android 4.0 update. Do let us know how it works for you, in the comments below.

3 Comment

  1. maquebex says: Reply

    does this method of flashing erase all the stored information and apps on sensation xl ???? thanks in advance for the answer..!!

  2. chamroeun says: Reply

    on step 5 ,why i won’t see an “!” icon on the screen ,normally how long for waiting ?

  3. din says: Reply

    why cant i find my software number on step 3, my software number is 1.30.461.1 ???

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